SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

New developments in research etc.

Smart Cities Could Be Crippled by Dumb Security

Urban centers around the world increasingly drip with technology. But as a hack over the weekend reminds us, city officials mustn’t forget that cybersecurity is a critical part of adding smarts to the urban environment.

On Friday night, residents of Dallas struggled to get as much sleep as they might have liked. At around 11:40 P.M., the city’s hurricane warning system sounded: 156 emergency sirens, all screaming out in unison. It happened another 15 times, each burst lasting 90 seconds, until the alarms finally fell silent around 1:20 on Saturday morning.
READ MORE: https://www.technologyreview.com/s/604124/smart-cities-could-be-crippled...

Found in the wild: Vault7 hacking tools WikiLeaks says come from CIA

Malware that WikiLeaks purports belongs to the Central Intelligence Agency has been definitively tied to an advanced hacking operation that has been penetrating governments and private industries around the world for years, researchers from security firm Symantec say.

Longhorn, as Symantec dubs the group, has infected governments and companies in the financial, telecommunications, energy, and aerospace industries since at least 2011 and possibly as early as 2007. The group has compromised 40 targets in at least 16 countries across the Middle East, Europe, Asia, Africa, and on one occasion, in the US, although that was probably a mistake.
READ MORE: https://arstechnica.com/security/2017/04/found-in-the-wild-vault7-hackin...

Hacker Group Releases Password To NSA's "Top Secret Arsenal" In Protest Of Trump Betrayal

Last August, the intel world was abuzz following the news that a previously unknown hacker collective, "The Shadow Brokers" had hacked and released legitimate hacking tools from the NSA's own special-ops entity, the "Equation Group", with initial speculation emerging that the Russians may have penetrated the US spy agency as suggested by none other than Edward Snowden. The Shadow Brokers released a bunch of the organization's hacking tools, and were asking for 1 million bitcoin (around $568 million at the time) to release more files, however failed to find a buyer.
READ MORE: http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-04-08/hacker-group-releases-password-...

Why American Farmers Are Hacking Their Tractors With Ukrainian Firmware

To avoid the draconian locks that John Deere puts on the tractors they buy, farmers throughout America's heartland have started hacking their equipment with firmware that's cracked in Eastern Europe and traded on invite-only, paid online forums.

Tractor hacking is growing increasingly popular because John Deere and other manufacturers have made it impossible to perform "unauthorized" repair on farm equipment, which farmers see as an attack on their sovereignty and quite possibly an existential threat to their livelihood if their tractor breaks at an inopportune time.
READ MORE: https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/why-american-farmers-are-hack...

How Flashing a Peace Sign Could Get You Hacked

In January, a team from Japan’s National Institute of Informatics demonstrated how fingerprint data could be obtained from photographs taken with a high-resolution digital camera. The copied prints were a near 100 percent match to the original fingerprints—even when the subject was standing up to 10 feet away.
READ MORE: http://europe.newsweek.com/how-flashing-peace-sign-get-hacked-570187?rm=eu

Kim Dotcom: Windows is “Effectively CIA Spyware,” Trump Spied on “24/7”

Megaupload and Bitcache Founder Kim Dotcom has highlighted the most striking revelations from WikiLeaks’ latest expose on CIA spying practices.

In a series of tweets on Tuesday and Wednesday, the entrepreneur noted that the agency likely spied on US President Donald trump “24/7” by bugging his electronic devices.

“They used his phone cam & mic. Watching and listening 24/7,” he wrote.
READ MORE: https://cointelegraph.com/news/kim-dotcom-windows-is-effectively-cia-spy...

New Leaks Confirm: CIA Posed as ‘Russian Hackers’


All allegations of "digital fingerprints" left behind by Russian hackers must now be dismissed as either fake or meaningless: http://russia-insider.com/en/new-leaks-confirm-cia-posed-russian-hackers...

To keep Tor hack source code secret, DOJ dismisses child porn case

Rather than share the now-classified technological means that investigators used to locate a child porn suspect, federal prosecutors in Washington state have dropped all charges against a man accused of accessing Playpen, a notorious and now-shuttered website.

The case, United States v. Jay Michaud, is one of nearly 200 cases nationwide that have raised new questions about the appropriate limitations on the government’s ability to hack criminal suspects. Michaud marks just the second time that prosecutors have asked that case be dismissed.
READ MORE: https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2017/03/doj-drops-case-against-child...

Hackers hold MILLIONS of voice recordings to ransom after creepy CloudPets teddy bears leak private data of parents and children

'Smart' teddy bears that listened to the voices of children and parents have leaked 2 million recorded messages online - and hackers are now holding them for ransom.

The company that makes the 'CloudPets' toys also leaked the user details of 800,000 accounts, including email addresses and passwords.
READ MORE: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-4267276/Toys-leak-2MILLIO...

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